« on: May 04, 2011, 04:18:51 PM »
Well in regards to transferring it probably won't happen. This is not an insult to you, but every student at any ABA school is pretty smart and motivated and on the first day everyone is certain they will put in the work and be in the top 10%. When 100% of people think they will be in the top 10% you don't need to be a math major to understand 90% will be incorrect.
FCSL & Appalachian are not phenomenal schools, but they are ABA approved institutions and if you graduate and pass the bar you are a lawyer. I think the main issue with Appalachian is that it is literally in the middle of nowhere. FCSL is in Jacksonville and there are no law schools in Jacksonville, but is a larger town so there might be some opportunities.
Also realize that at every ABA law school you learn literally the same thing. You read supreme court cases and the Supreme Court does not real special editions for T14 students to study. No matter what ABA school you attend you will take Civil Procedure, Torts, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, Property, Contracts, and LR&W in your first year. In Civil Procedure whether you go to Harvard or Appalachian you will read International Shoe, Pennoyer v. Neff learn about personal & subject matter jurisdiction etc. In Torts you will read the firecracker subway case I think Pelsgraff is the name of it and learn negligence, intentional torts, etc. In Criminal Law you learn the McNaughten Rule for insanity and the list goes on and on. These famous cases are written the same no matter what law school you attend and all ABA law schools are required to have a nearly identical first year curriculum.
Don't listen to the rankings they are written by a for-profit magaizne that the ABA, AALS, LSAC, and every legal organization discredits. The reason for this is their methodology consists of this. They send out scantrons to judges & lawyers across the country who check a scantron of 1-5. A judge in L.A. who has never been to Jacksonville or met anyone from FCSL decides they are a 2 and that is your ranking. Then based on this ranking schools become tied for 84th place in the most recent ranking everything is at least in a 5 way tie and my personal favorite was a 12 way tie for 84th place. You can see the absurdity directly from U.S. news and the 12 way ties etc. http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/law-rankings/page+4. This article from LSAC does a pretty good of explaining the whole system. http://www.lsac.org/LsacResources/Research/GR/GR-07-02.pdf
So bottom line don't worry about the rankings or what a "good: school is. FCSL is not Harvard and I am sure you already knew that. Now as FalconJimmy said the real question is whether or not you want to be a lawyer. If the answer to that basic question is yes then go to law school. ABA schools are all accredited by the ABA, which is not a perfect system itself, but whether or not you pass the bar & and are in good standing with the bar is much more important to your legal career than what a private, unregulated, magazine thinks of a particular school. If you attend FCSL or Appalachian you will have an ABA law degree and you can be a lawyer. You have a 0% chance of being a lawyer without going to law school.
There are worse ways to spend 200k than getting a law degree. There can also be better ways to spend it, but as FalconJimmy said the real question is whether or not you want to be a lawyer. If the answer to that question is yes and you have 200k and been accepted then I would say go for it. If the answer is I am not sure if I want to be a lawyer then you should work as a paralegal in a law firm somewhere and see if it really appeals to you.
You can also retake the LSAT if you want and if you are in Florida getting into FIU is much cheaper than FCSL and the admission requirements are not that much higher. It is a tough decision, but disregard the ridiculous things you read on the internet. Sites like JDunderground etc are so off base it is not even funny. When someone takes the time to b***h about how unfair everything is the reason everything is so unfair is because they would b***h about anything. There are people that will complain all day and all night and sadly many law students fall into this category, but if you put the work in and can handle a few rejections along the way you can have a successful legal career no matter what ABA school you go to.
Sorry for the long rant, but hopefully something in there was helpful.
No offense taken, Biggs, I've got thick skin. The answer is yes, I do want to be a lawyer. The only thing that really has been giving me cold feet is all the stuff I've been reading about the abysmal prospects for jobs, even for graduates of really top notch schools. I've read the different law school scam blogs and even lurked around in the JDUnderground site (those guys are really depressing) and I keep wondering that if even lawyers from great to decent schools aren't finding jobs, what hope would I have for coming out of a place like ASL or FCSL? I am indeed willing to put in time and effort to study and network, I just don't want all that effort to be for naught.
Either way, thanks for the advice, bigs, I"ll hop on this site to see what others have to say as well.